Mount Canobolas

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Mount Canobolas
Mount Canobolas.jpg
Mount Canobolas from the Pinnacle.
Elevation 1,390 m (4,560 ft)[1]
Mount Canobolas is located in New South Wales
Mount Canobolas
Mount Canobolas
Location in New South Wales
Location Central Tablelands, New South Wales, Australia
Range Main Range, Great Dividing Range
Coordinates 33°20′S 148°59′E / 33.333°S 148.983°E / -33.333; 148.983Coordinates: 33°20′S 148°59′E / 33.333°S 148.983°E / -33.333; 148.983[2]
Topo map Cudal
Type Extinct volcano
First ascent 1835 – Major Thomas Mitchell (European)
Easiest route Drive

Mount Canobolas, a mountain on a spur of the Great Dividing Range, is located in the Central Tablelands region of New South Wales, Australia.

With an elevation of 1,390 metres (4,560 ft) above sea level,[1] Mount Canobolas, an extinct volcano, it is the highest mountain in the region. Situated 13 kilometres (8.1 mi) southwest of the city of Orange, it is about 250 kilometres (155 mi) west of Sydney.

The northern slopes of the mountain, with fertile volcanic soil, are popular cold-climate wine producing area.


The name comes from two Aboriginal words, coona and booloo meaning two headed beast or conjoined twins.


Transmission towers atop Mount Canobolas

There is a 360 degree view from the summit, which is often snow-capped in winter. The mountain is now part of a 15-square-kilometre (5.8 sq mi) area controlled by the NSW National Parks & Wildlife Service, which offers various walks: to Bald Hill; to Young Man Canobolas; Federal Falls to Mount Towac, and other locations.[3] The volcanic peaks give wide views and there are some attractive waterfalls.

The mountain was first climbed by a European when Major Thomas Mitchell came there in 1835. An early squatter on the slopes of the Canobolas Range was Thomas Hood, whose father, John Hood, came from England for a visit in 1841, and wrote an account of the district. By 1848 Hood was lessee for Boree Cabonne.

The top of the mountain is now dominated by numerous towers used for television and radio transmissions across large areas of central New South Wales. These transmitters include towers for Airservices Australia, Royal Australian Air Force, Prime Television, WIN Television, Australian Broadcasting Corporation and Southern Cross Ten.

Each year the Orange Community runs the Great Volcanic Mountain Challenge, an 11-kilometre (6.8 mi) walk and fun run from the Pinnacle to the Summit of Mount Canobolas by the volcanic plugs of Mount Towac and Young Man Canobolas. The inaugural event was held in 2006.[4]

Geology and landscape[edit]

Mount Canobolas is an extinct volcanic complex which erupted in several phases between 13 and 11 million years ago, making the mountain a relatively recent geological feature. Earlier eruptions were less violent with free flowing lavas reaching a maximum coverage extent of approximately 800 square kilometres (310 sq mi). Later eruptions became more violent, and producing increasingly viscous lavas with less extensive coverage.

The contemporary landscape of Mount Canobolas exhibits erosional features dominated by several remnant peaks. Additional volcanic features are present within the zone of volcanic influence, including vents, dykes, peaks, domes and plugs.

The mountain's geologic history has yielded a variety of landforms which provide a range of environmental habitats, and notably rocky outcrops harbouring rare species of lichens. There are cliff features with waterfalls, such as the popular recreation locality, Federal Falls. Mount Canobolas is listed on the Register of the National Estate because of its geological significance.[5]

Highest point claims[edit]

Mount Canobolas is, as claimed, the highest point in New South Wales west of the Great Dividing Range, but is not, as is sometimes claimed, the highest point between Australia's Great Dividing Range and Africa, with both Mount Zeil in Australia's Northern Territory and Mount Woodroffe in South Australia being higher, at 1,531 metres (5,023 ft) and 1,435 metres (4,708 ft), respectively. This would in any case be an insignificant claim to fame, since many of the tallest peaks in the Great Dividing Range are in fact further west than Mount Canobolas is. For example, Mount Bogong in Victoria at 1,986 metres (6,516 ft) and 36°44′S 147°18′E / 36.733°S 147.300°E / -36.733; 147.300 is 591 metres (1,939 ft) higher and almost a degree and a half longitude further west. This translates to a difference of around 125 kilometres (78 mi) using the degree length formula.

The islands of Réunion and Madagascar also have higher peaks and are between the Great Dividing Range and Africa.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Map of Mount Canobolas, NSW". Bonzle Digital Atlas of Australia. Retrieved 27 May 2015. 
  2. ^ "Mount Canobolas". Geographical Names Register (GNR) of NSW. Geographical Names Board of New South Wales. Retrieved 27 May 2015. 
  3. ^ "Mount Canobolas State Conservation Area". Department of Environment and Climate Change NSW. Retrieved 5 May 2007. 
  4. ^ "Runners facing uphill challenge - Course as tough as ever: Davis". Central Western Daily. 24 March 2007. Retrieved 5 May 2007. 
  5. ^ "Mount Canobolas State Conservation Area". NSW Government. Retrieved 9 June 2014.